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Adventures in the Second Person
Posted on Wednesday, August 10 @ 13:50:00 CEST by julian

Art Games
Update:14-08-05. Windows version of demo now works nearly as well as the Linux version. youBot now chases and navigates in Windows. If it doesn't work for you, let me know..

For a few years friends have heard me ranting about the second-person shooter format, what it might look and play like. I've always been meaning to actually implement something slightly playable that throws around these ideas.

The past few weeks, while serving as Artist in Residence at the ITU in Copenhagen I've been thinking about it again and cobbling together the basic logic. Here's a little demo I made in Blender and Python that represents one configuration: the second person as a displacement of agency and as a crisis of control - a Dislocative Media if you like.

The first person perspective has always been priveledged with the pointillism (or synchronicity) of a physiology that travels with the will in some shape or form, "I act from where I perceive" and "I am on the inside looking out". In this little experiment however, you are on the outside looking in, and to my great amusement, it's a complete and total pain in the arse.

The object of the game? Shoot yourself to live!

Read on for files and instructions..

In this take on the 2nd Person Perspective, you control yourself through the eyes of the bot, but you do not control the bot. Your eyes have effectively been switched. Naturally this makes action difficult when you aren't within the bot's field of view; thus both you and the bot (or other player) will need to work together, to combat each other.

Here, both you and the bot (or other player) are really just a displaced projection of first person agency, outside the first, looking inward at it from the second and third perspectives. When you start the game you are looking through the eyes of a bot that is trying to find and shoot you. That bot is you. This bot is not very good at this, largely because it's really just a place holder for a two-player mode I'm currently working on; the bot will get lost and/or stuck on walls and will occassionally need a nudge to become unstuck. When you shoot the bot (you) it will flee, trying to put some distance between itself and the other you.

The Almost Intelligence I've given it is of an 'only just' quality and may improve after I've finished a 2 player prototype.

I'll post a project page for this little endeavour so you can watch it develop.


Linux (3.1M binary)
Make executable (either right click set executable or chmod +x) and click (or './the-file') to play

Windows (1.7M zip)
Extract the zip archive and click the exe to play. Best not to move the file from the folder created as the game needs the DLL's.

This game was made on a Linux system, decent performance on Windows is not guaranteed!

OSX: Not yet.. I knew I should've kept OSX for a time like this ;)

For either platform you'll need graphics accelleration to play.


W - forward
S - backward
A - strafe left
D - strafe right
LMB-CLICK and drag to aim.
< SPACE> to shoot

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